Tuesday, January 21, 2014

DIY Smart Battery Isolator

This next project is of extreme interest to RV & Boat owners, Ham Radio Operators, and anyone else that is running accessory equipment in a vehicle that needs to isolate their House Batteries from their Starter Battery. When it is finished, an Arduino will monitor both battery packs, and link them when either side exceeds 13.2 volts. This would only happen if one side or the other is in a charge cycle, like when the vehicle is running (alternator) or solar is charging the house batteries. This allows either charging system to maintain the batteries, but not allow the accessories to discharge the Starting Battery. As an option, an over-ride switch can allow the use of the House Batteries to "jump" the Starting Battery in an emergency. An additional option will be a digital display of amps flowing (and in which direction) and voltage of each battery bank.

Step 1 is connecting the solenoid to the batteries and the Arduino.
Step 2 is setting up the current and voltage monitors.
Step 3 is building the display.